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Does Your Bad Breath Embarrass You

May 17, 2008
Many people live with the embarrassing knowledge that they have bad breath. Fortunately this condition is one that can usually be corrected. In most cases, only those that do not know or refuse to take action must constantly live with bad breath.

You may be surprised to know that almost 76,000,000 people in the United States have halitosis or bad breath. This condition is no respecter of age, sex or position. Bad breath can strike anyone.

It is difficult for you to detect your own bad breath, unless it is really atrocious. There is the standard test where you exhale into your cupped hand and try to inhale quickly. This is not very effective. If that little test exposes an unpleasant odor, then you probably have a rather severe bad breath problem.

There is a rather simple method of judging your breath. First I would recommend that you wash the back of your hand. Then after it has dried, give it a lick. Allow the saliva to dry for a few seconds and smell. This will give you an accurate representation of any mouth odor you may have. There is one other method you might use. Take a piece of floss and slide it up and down between your back teeth. Smell of the floss.

Now you have done the test and have noticed an unpleasant odor. What can you do about it? First, insure that you are following these guidelines.

1) Brush your teeth twice daily.
2) When brushing your teeth be sure to brush your tongue. You can also use a tongue scraper.
3) Floss at least once a day.
4) Drink plenty of water.
5) Quit your tobacco habit.
6) Have your teeth cleaned twice a year.
7) Have your dentist check your teeth twice a year.

These are the basics for ensuring pleasant breath. But if you are doing these and you still have an unpleasant breath odor, see your dentist immediately. Your dentist will be able to tell you what is causing your bad breath.

The cause is not limited to but could be any of the following.

1) Sinus drainage.
2) Bronchial or lung disorder.
3) Dry mouth, which can be caused by several different medications.
4) Gastro or stomach problems.
5) Tooth decay.

Once the cause is located it can usually be corrected. But as in all things, you must take action to correct the problem.

There are many different breath mint and mouthwash products on the market. The best you can hope from these products is that they will temporarily mask the problem.

Some of the mouthwash products that have excess alcohol may even increase the problem. When you rinse, the excess alcohol dries your mouth more and could intensify the bad breath.

Under normal conditions your mouth is most dry in the morning when you awake--thus morning breath. This condition is normal for most of us. When we sleep our body's systems slow down to recuperate from the previous day's activities and to prepare for tomorrow. With that slowing our saliva production decreases, allowing bacteria to build during the night hours. So when you wake in the morning and find yourself with "morning breath" do not fear. This condition goes away quickly with your morning brushing.

Follow these guidelines and whether you are on a date or in an important business meeting, you will always be confident that you do not have bad breath.
About the Author
Don Robertson is co-founder of Benefit Discount Services. Through his company he provides big savings on
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